Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
It began in the 1980’s. We lived across the street from a Catholic Church and one evening I happened to be looking out my front door. I saw a crowd of people gathering and it was apparent that some of them were ill. Something unusual was going on and it piqued my interest. I found out later that the people were there for a “charismatic healing Mass.” I had never heard of such a thing. My teenage son had asthma so I was eager to know what the healing Mass was all about. Through further inquiry we found out that there was a Catholic priest who traveled from parish to parish conducting healing Masses. The next time he came to our church we went to the Mass. This was the beginning of our misguided journey through the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.
As a result of our involvement in the renewal, my husband and I became:
1. Devoted to the Mass. (The Mass continues the Sacrifice of the Cross. Each time the Mass is offered, the Sacrifice of Christ is repeated. The New Saint Joseph Baltimore Catechism, pages 5, 7, 162, 168, 171, 182, 254, Official Revised Edition, No. 2, Catholic Book Publishing Co., NY)
2. Devoted to worship of the “host”. (The “host” is the communion wafer. The priest said the wafer was Jesus. That is idolatry.)
3. Devoted to Mary. (The renewal promoted the rosary, and the global apparitions of “Mary”, especially the most recent ones in Medjugorje, Bosnia. These apparitions were bringing forth “messages” for the world to hear. We began to proclaim these “messages” to others not realizing that they contradicted the bible and teachings of Jesus. We became “evangelists for Mary!”)
We did these things because we did not know the scriptures.
Hebrews 10:12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
Romans 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshiped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
One day I asked God if I was doing anything wrong. I wanted to do what was right in God’s eyes and was willing to turn away from whatever He showed me to be sin. That prayer was answered through a series of events. True believers witnessed to me, clearly showing me Rome’s errors. I was encouraged to seek truth by reading the Bible, which I did. As I read the Bible, and prayed for understanding, it was as if a light bulb went on in my head. I understood, for the first time, my sinful condition and my need for forgiveness.
I understood that Jesus alone was my Savior and that “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Acts 4:12”. I realized that receiving the “sacraments” could not save anyone. I learned from Scripture that the “sacrifice of the Mass”, the worship of the “communion bread”, and praying to “Mary” (or any dead person) were heretical and idolatrous teachings, and would certainly damn my soul to hell! I realized that the “Mary” which was appearing to people around the world was not the real Mary but rather a demonic counterfeit spirit. I knew the “messages” this “spirit” was proclaiming clearly contradicted the Word of God, and the teachings of Jesus Christ.
I prayed that if God would continue to give me understanding concerning the truth of His Word, I would follow Him wherever that truth would lead me. I had been deceived by false teaching. I thought I was headed for heaven when in reality I was headed for hell and didn’t even know it. I thought I knew Christ but I didn’t know Him at all! When I was born again and knew the truth I repented of my involvement in the Roman Catholic Church and it’s charismatic renewal. I could not stay there and at the same time be faithful and obedient to Jesus Christ and His Word.
As I sought truth, I learned a biblical principle in 2 Kings 17:33,34. That principle is that the true God cannot be worshiped in our own way nor in an idolatrous way. If that’s what we are doing we are not worshiping the true God at all. It is mixture and is nothing more than a mongrel religion. (Matthew Henry Commentary: Assemblies that worship God in spirit and in truth are the Israel of God; assemblies that either worship false gods, or the true God in a false manner, are the synagogues of Satan: though they may profess to be the only people of God, their profession is a lie.)
2 Kings 17:33, 34 They feared the LORD, and served their own gods, after the manner of the nations whom they carried away from thence. Unto this day they do after the former manners: they fear not the LORD, neither do they after their statutes, or after their ordinances, or after the law and commandment which the LORD commanded the children of Jacob, whom he named Israel;
My life has never been the same since I was born again, born of the Holy Spirit. It’s not that my life is free from trouble, but there is a constant deep peace and joy that can only come from God. The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, is called the Comforter, the Teacher and the Spirit of Truth. I often want to tell people that all they could ever want, all the peace, joy, love and comfort they could ever dream of can found in the real Lord Jesus Christ and that is true even in our darkest hour.
Isaiah 55:6-7 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
Psalms 50:15 And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.